Sunday Superlatives 3/4/2012

by Rachel Held Evans Read Distraction Free

Around the blogosphere...

Best Video (nominated by Aly Lewis):
It’s apparently been around for a while, but I just found “Fotoshop by Adobe” 

Best Reminder: 
Andrew Sullivan with “Breitbart – And Us

 “In the new 24/7 mediaverse, in a brutal, unending culture war, with the web unleashed and news and opinion flashing every few seconds, you can very easily lose yourself, and forget how and why you got here in the first place. There have been times writing and editing this blog on that kind of insane schedule for more than a decade when I have wondered who this new frantic way of life would kill first. I do not doubt that Andrew tried to keep a balance, and stay healthy, but like the rest of us, became consumed with and overwhelmed by this twittering, unending bloghorreic chatter. It takes a much bigger physical, emotional and spiritual toll than most realize, and I've spent some time over the years worrying it could destroy me. Here I am, after all, at 9.30 pm, still blogging, having just filed another column, and checking the traffic stats, and glancing feverishly at every new item at Memeorandum.” 

Best Writing: 
Sarah Bessey with “In which I reject the temptation of negative definition for the Kingdom of God

“So the kingdom of God is a pearl of great price. It's the yeast for the good bread, the kneading and the thumping, the warmth and the smell of bread with just a bit of butter.  It's the smallest seed of a shrub (and it's a mighty tree of life). It's treasure in the field worth everything. It's a bonfire for dancing and laughter. It's stars on the water and sand between your toes. It's family blood that thickens and holds and pumps in every life and it's friendship that needs no words, only a raised eyebrow, for an entire conversation to happen because really what is family but this and all of us in this together? And I think that the Kingdom is every good and perfect moment in our life serving as a taste, just a small taste, of what God truly intended.”

And you gotta know I also loved Sarah's re-post of "In which I am a biblical woman"

"I am a biblical woman. Not because my life resembles the latter half of Proverbs 31 with such stunning accuracy.  Or because my husband is the "head of our home." Nor is it because I manage our household and the raising of our children. Nor is it because I work with my hands or homeschool or fulfill a long list of chores and ideals born of a sitcom society that never truly existed. I am a biblical woman because I live and move and have my being in the daily reality of being a follower of Jesus, living in the reality of being loved."

Most Stunning:
The Big Picture with “Tornadoes Rip Through Midwest and South

Most Prepared: 
My mother with “Robin’s Tornado Stronghold

Most Vulnerable: 
Joy Bennett with “’Your baby will need a heart transplant.’”

 “Today is only the third Leap Day since Elli was born. On each of the previous two, I mourned the loss of our healthy typical child. I remembered the double-tragedy of her diagnosis on Leap Day and her brush with death on March 1 during a sudden and extended cardiac arrest. It was a little death, the worst days we’d yet experienced. This year is different. I’m sad, yes. I’m grieving many things. But this day is no longer the anniversary of the worst day we’ve faced...”

Most Insightful:
 Morgan Guyton at Red Letter Christians with "Persecution and Epistemic Closure"

“When people live in epistemic closure, they are immune to integrity because they only trust people who already agree with their ideology. They scan potential sources of information for the presence of code words that indicate whether or not the speaker can be trusted as a member of their own ideological tribe.”

Most Fun: 
Gretchen Rubin with “What are your eight auspicious symbols?

Most Inspiring: 
Wendy McCraig with “In the Company of Junia

"As a young minister in one such church, I was told that I could do anything I wanted as long as no one ever saw me as the leader.  I did all the same work as my male counter-parts, but I was a “director” and they were “pastors.” The sad thing is that at the time I did not even question this.  The stories of Deborah, Phoebe and Junia were never told in that church.  Women were to submit to men and never to be in positions of authority over men.  It was a given.  For me to argue differently would be judged as “un-Christian.” It was at Baptist Theological Seminary at Richmond that Junia finally found a place in my world thanks to the brilliant and passionate teaching of Dr. Scott Spencer.  Even though Dr. Spencer laid a strong biblical foundation for the role of women in ministry based on the New Testament, I still lived with the fear of once again being silenced by the church.  Upon graduation from seminary, I choose not to enter into the institutional church nor to pursue ordination within the Baptist tradition.  It was far easier for this Junia to find her voice and exercise her call outside the church.”

Most Relatable:
Tim King (our Christian progressive) with “Don’t blame college for young people leaving Christianity

“By 2004, I realized that the highest Christian calling in my life might not be to vote Republican.” 

Most Practical:
Tom Basson at Mike Hyatt's blog with “Crossing Daily Finish Lines” 

"Yet, so often in my own life, even though the 'race' of a workday is over, I continue to 'run'—to check email, answer calls, stress about problems at the office—when really I should be resting, relaxing, and giving my presence to my family. That’s why this year I have started to intentionally create 'finishing lines' at the end of every day.”

Most Informative

Plagiarism Today with “A Word of Caution for Pinterest Users


Amy Lynn Andrews with “Pinterest and Copyright: What I’m Doing

(I’m thinking it’s time to delete my Pinterest account. Too many other things to worry about than getting sued. I use Wylio for free, legal photos on the blog anyway.) 

Most Likely to Make You Say “Really?” Like Seth and Amy: 
Rachel Stone at Her.Meneutics with “Breastfeeding in Church, and Other Petty Crimes

“A Georgia woman named Nirvana Jenette claims she was kicked out of church for breastfeeding, the pastor ordering her to nurse the baby in the bathroom and calling her behavior ‘lewd,’ comparing her to a stripper...”


Best Sentence: 
Maureen Dowd with “Have you no shame, Rush?” 

“Isn’t this the last guy who should be pointing fingers and accusing others of taking pills for recreational purposes?”

Best Paragraph: 
Georgetown President John J. DeGioia, defending Sandra Fluke

 “She was respectful, sincere, and spoke with conviction. She provided a model of civil discourse.  And yet, some of those who disagreed with her position – including Rush Limbaugh and commentators throughout the blogosphere and in various other media channels – responded with behavior that can only be described as misogynistic, vitriolic, and a misrepresentation of the position of our student.”

Best Response: 
Krystal Ball at the Huffington Post with “Boycott Rush
[Several sponsors have pulled their ads from Rush Limbaugh's site.] 

Best Advice: 
Irvina at Rage Against the Minivan with “Tips for Preventing Eating Disorders

“Many times children develop an over concern with their looks and body, by excitement of “Wow! You look so beautiful!” There is nothing wrong with this, but try to show the equal amount of excitement around their creativity, kindness and strength. Beauty is conditional and doesn’t help the child develop a strong sense of self. What does help a child is praise for their individuality she has, “Wow! You are such a good artists!” Or “Wow! You are such a helpful sister!” or “Wow! You are so smart!” Every child has gifting, it’s up to us to show them their worth comes from their actions.”

Best Question: 
Scot McKnight with “What comes to mind when you hear the expression ‘the wrath of God’?

Funniest Photo:
Awkward Family Photos with “In Hiding” 

On the blog...

Most Popular Post:
"The Three Things I Tell Myself Before a Speaking Gig"

Most Popular Comment:
Ann Voskamp, in response to “The Three Things I Tell Myself Before a Speaking Gig” wrote:

“Yes, Rachel, yes...And I am slowly learning: Give the audience the gift of "going first."  That you give them a gift by "going first" and sharing out of your own brokenness, your own vulnerabilities, your own messes... and in that, they are given the gift of not being alone, of companionship, of courage. And the whole room begins to unwrap their hidden, hurting places. And Christ Himself comes to bind up our wounds.God go with you, friend... All's grace, Ann.”

Anything catch your eye online this week? What's happening on your blog?

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